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Defeating the Rival

In the fight of life, you must view each obstacle as an evenly matched battle between two “Rivals.”

Each having the noble intent to make you stronger, wiser, more courageous, and more skilled.

But only one will stand in supremacy. Forcing the other to fold or reinvent themselves.

Nevertheless, you must pick a stance. Deciding who will win this fight.

A fight that will ultimately mold you into the warrior that you were destined to become.

You must respect the ability of your opposition. But do not fear them.

This opponent is unforgiving. Like nothing you have ever seen.

Do you know who you are up against?

You are battling Goliath.

A monster disguised as ego, anxiety, fear, depression, or addiction. You are in combat with gluttony, self-doubt, and complacency . Or God forbid, a combination of them all.

As David, you are armed with raw skill, unwavering will, and the strength of God in your soul.

An invincible combination if used to its potential.

But how often do we maximize this genius-formula?

How often do we live in full gratitude by surrendering to our unique gifts. How long will we hide them from the world?

There is a battle to be won. We must confront the rival. We must attack.

Each year represents a “12 round fight”. One singular match that will influence your personal win-loss record in life.

Each month is a “3-minute round.” Presenting another opportunity to slowly chop down the enemy. One who attacks you blindly, swiftly and relentlessly.

How you manage these rounds (months) will determine if you feel the thrill of victory or the agony of defeat.

You must be vigilant. Be intentional. If not, you will experience self-inflicted suffering. Unnecessary damage.

Pulling your life back into a pit of mediocrity as it suffocates your potential in an inescapable guillotine.

Months 1 through 3 are the feel out rounds. You test the mettle of the beast. Understanding his tendencies. Timing his speed. Gaging his power.

You are fresh, focused, and spry. Mentally adapting to his vicious swings.

Can you handle his power in the early stages of this fight?

The year is long. It will take far more than a couple of solid rounds to win this war.

You must sustain this level of energy and focus to defeat the rival. To dismantle the darkness.

The brutal truth? Most people lack the devastating power of consistency. They don’t have the conditioning to endure. They can’t outlast the rival.

And you have yet to be taken into deep waters.

Months 4 through 9 are the swing rounds. You can shift the momentum. Swing the fight your way. Overcome the slow start and move things in your favor.

But have you mastered the basics?

Do you know the sweet science of self-mastery?

Do you have the offense to keep the rival on their heels?

To keep Goliath’s mind occupied?

Your daily habits are the stinging jabs to keep the rival at bay.

Your priorities are the savage right hands that remind Goliath that you can’t be toyed with.

Your ability to adapt is the ballet-like footwork that allows you to pivot and adjust to unforeseen situations.

Your mental toughness is the iron chin that can walk through his or her barbaric haymakers.

Your faith and purpose are the ultimate guiding strategy.

Faith being the ring generalship that settles you down when things look uncertain. Purpose acting as your conditioning to wear down your worthy opponent.

Because no one wants to stand in front of anything that is relentless.

But are you built like that? Have you put in the work?

After all, the one who is most dangerous is the one who has nothing to lose.

Are you living that free?

Living disciplined, yet fluid?

Do you live by that creed?

You will have to, if you want to be the one left standing with their hand raised. There is so much fight left in Goliath. You must be ready.

Months 10 through 12 are the championship rounds. The ones that matter most.

The rounds that make or break a fighter. The rounds that expose the weakness of a coward or the heart of a champion.

Do you have the ability to finish stronger than you started?

These moments will reveal the discipline of your preparation or your lack thereof.

What is glaringly missing are the ebbs and flows of this heated battle.

It’s not as simple as the legendary biblical story of David versus Goliath. It doesn't start and end with one sling shot without armor.

This Goliath doesn’t take a knee so quickly.

Progress is never linear. It’s not a one way staircase to success and self-transformation.

Almost every monumental victory takes 5x longer than you thought along with 5x more suffering.

It takes a rare breed to adapt.

It takes a rare breed to overcome.

It takes a rare breed to dominate.

The last three rounds are the epitome of a brutally cold winter with no shelter. No clothing. No human body to give you heat, comfort, or even an ear to listen to your struggle.

You can’t lure your enemy into a trap. You can’t “rope a dope” Goliath. The rival is far too savvy for that. They know you too well.

Prepare for the overhand to the temple followed by the shot to the liver. In fact, expect it.

Upon impact, it will shake you to the core. Numbing your mind, shifting your organs. Forcing your legs to buckle. Compromising your vision.

You gasp for breath as you feel your organs almost completely shut down.

You will try to clinch, grab the ropes for support, as you glance at your corner for guidance. But no one is there.

Your legs are buried in cement, your arms are noodles, and your mind is mush..

Mentally exhausted. It takes all your energy to simply take a knee. You barely know where you are. Kneeling as you hear a hard 8 count. Gathering yourself before you lunge back to your feet..

Then before you can regroup, you get bombed with another straight and crash into the canvas headfirst as your jaw bounces off the mat.

The rival has no mercy. He smirks arrogantly w blatant disrespect.

At that second, you will have one of two choices.

To stay down and allow the rival to stand over you as if you are a rotten corpse. Pointing to the crowd and back at your battered body. Saying without words, “I told you so. This person is not built to last.”

Or you can peel yourself off the floor and fight like hell. Rise from the ashes. Take what is rightfully yours. Your dignity and your life!

In your mind, the ref counts to 10 in slow motion. But the reality is he is counting at rapid speed and you just don’t know it.

Each number counted represents months of your life passing you by while you sleepwalk through life. Y

You need to move quickly.

You ask yourself,

How will I respond?

How will I adapt?

How can I beat Goliath?

Then it hits you.

Before the count reaches 10, you realize where your strength comes from.

You realize who is in your corner. You feel his energy.

The mantra starts ringing in your head.

God is your trainer.

God is your cornerman.

God is your cutman.

He prepares you for battle.

He guides your strategy.

He heals your wounds.

“No weapon formed against thee shall prosper.” Isaiah 54:17

“I am built for this.” If God called me to slay giants, then he already bred me with the strength and courage to do so.”

You can’t shake a man who has God in soul. Unleash his power.

Trust his teaching.

Trust his plan.

Trust your calling.

“May his purpose be the strategy that brings the rival to his knees.

Allow my obedience to be the power that forces Goliath on his or her back.”

Suddenly, you muster every fiber of your being and boldly rise. The ref shakes your gloves, nods his head, and lets you free.

But this time is different.

You stop taking rounds off. Leaving no gaps of error.

Goliath tries to corner the ring, cut off your angles, and walks you down to ignite fear. Staring down the whites of your eyes.

You don’t blink or flinch. You stop dancing around the ring with no real intention to engage. You stand your ground.

Taking the fight to your opponent with a controlled rage. A fluid fury that can’t be contained.

Standing in the center of the ring trading punches for the world to see.

Outworking the noise.

Outworking the doubt.

Outworking the fear.

Immersed with the task at hand. Defeating the rival. Becoming the Greatest YOU.

The rival tried to bait you into battle and expose you as a coward. You gladly accepted that invitation and you are minutes away from serving him a massive plate of humility.

You just need to finish.

There is no referee to break up the clinch. You can’t run from your fate.

“There is no going around. The only way is through.” You know it. You love it.

The rival’s punches are coming from all angles. You are slipping, weaving, rolling,and countering each punch. Creating a magnificent symphony between your defense and offense.

You roll his right right hook and counter with a hook to his gut and a devastating uppercut right on the money. Rolling Goliath’s eyes towards the back of his head.

The rival is on wobbly ground. Stumbling back towards the ropes. You keep the pressure on. Walking him down like a lion does a wounded gazelle.

Each combination feels more fluid ending with a vicious snap. You almost start toying with the rival, but you are too intelligent to let ego be your demise.

You continue to stalk your opponent with quiet confidence.

Imposing your will. The rival is at your mercy. Goliath feels the overwhelming power of your greatness.

You finish him with an overhand right to the head. Watching him tumble down with mercy like Ali did Foreman in Zaire.

You are victorious. You defeated your rival. You defeated Goliath.

You defeated YOURSELF. The Lesser version of you. The person you battle with everyday. The person we all have to beat..

You beat the addiction.

The depression.

The loneliness.

The doubt.

The insecurity.

The fear.

Then you realize that this is only one match. Goliath will be back. A different version of him will rise. One disguised to fool you into a trap. Making you believe that you aren’t worthy of the crown. Everyone wants to see the champion fall.

But you remember, with each round (month) won, you are a step closer to winning another match (year), winning the ultimate fight of infinite growth. Chasing the neverending path of personal excellence.

You become a step closer to wrapping that championship belt around your well-deserved waist. Fighting for every piece of gold on that belt.

Earning the strap of the “Greatest You”. A moving target that never sits around your waist forever. You need to scrap for that crown everyday of your life until you perish.

And just when you think your job is done. Your next opponent calls you out from the crowd ready to take the food off your plate.

The next Goliath. One that is bigger, stronger, faster, and more skilled. And you have to do it all over again. Day after day. Year after year.

But when the final bell rings, only you can decide if your hand will be raised with pride or your head down in shame. You are the only one who can raise your own hand.

But you are a Rare Breed. You welcome all comers.

Line them up and watch them fall. One by one.

You are ready for the internal war that we all face. The fight between You. vs. You.

You are the “danger”. You are the “calm”.

You are “The rival.” You are the victor.

You are Goliath. You are David.

You decide who will prevail?

I suggest you take what is rightfully yours.

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